The 15th was cold and rainy. I had about 4 pairs of gloves with me, but no combination of them could keep my fingers warm when the temperature dropped. It warmed up when we rode through Whitehorse, the capital of the Yukon, which seemed like a nice town. My rear tire was getting pretty worn by this point, but I wanted to wait until I got to Alaska to replace it, where I could get a better price. We stopped at Pine Lake Campground, near the town of Haines Junction.
We played frisbee on the beach for a while and then met Mike, who said there had been a bluegrass music festival in town over the weekend, and several of the bands were camping there. We stopped by their site later in the evening and listened to a bunch of musicians from different bands, jamming for a long time. I talked to a guy named Oliver who sang and played bass in a band called Outlaw Social, from Victoria. Also there were some guys from Cadillac Sky, a band from Texas. Both bands are really good, and can be found on MySpace. Random groups of 6 or 7 people would pick songs and jam together for long periods; it was a great time. I wish I'd heard about the festival earlier, so we could have tried to arrive in time for the whole thing.
The morning brought nice, warm weather with clear skies. Later, dark clouds hovered over nearby mountains but we managed to sneak by them without getting too wet. We rode by some beautiful mountains, part of the St. Elias range I think. Then we stopped for a while by Kluane Lake.
Then the roads got bad. There were lots of construction areas where we had to stop and wait long periods for a pilot car to come and lead us down the road. The gravel sections were either terribly dusty or wet & muddy. My bike had never been so filthy. It was slow going, but we finally made it to Alaska on June 16th.
The border crossing was surprisingly simple. They ask if you've got any tobacco or alcohol, and Cyrus admitted to having half a bottle of rum, but the guy just waved us in. The roads improved only slightly, still had a lot of gravel sections. We stopped at a campground outside of Tok, the first real town. I got cell phone reception for the first time in 5 days and let the parents know I was okay.
The next day we saw our first moose on the side of the road, on our way to Fairbanks. I couldn't believe how many people were driving RVs across the country, especially with gas prices the way they were. I can't imagine how expensive it would be to drive an RV on a trip like we were doing. For that kind of money you could fly to Fiji and spend a month surfing and scuba diving, with cash to spare. If sitting in a bus, watching the world fly by your window is your idea of a vacation then have at it, but you'll never sell one to me. I think I'd rather have a sail boat; I hear they get great highway mileage.
Awesome article!!! Very inspiring and sounds like one helluva good time.
Thu Oct 10, 2013 at 11:26 AM
June-July 2010 I started on US-50 in Ocean City Maryland. Put my rear tire in the Atlantic Ocean and rode US-50 all the way to San Francisco where I put my front tire in the Pacific Ocean.
Then up the coast into Canada; back into Washington State; and home on US-2 along our northern border.
60 days, camping and cooking, just over 12,000 miles.
Thu Jun 13, 2013 at 6:09 PM
Great story telling. It is an adventure you will remember your entire lifetime. My husband and I are both retired Army and from one vet to another, thank you for your service. Not many are willing to risk all as you did. Well done and welcome home. Keep those wheels turning!
Fri Dec 9, 2011 at 9:13 PM
Awesome story bro. I enjoyed reading about your adventure. That's my kinda riding. Great trip and pictures.
Fri Aug 26, 2011 at 11:34 PM
Great trip...Great story!!! I'm leaving Afghanistan in June, will start my trip in Aug...I plan on taking
about two months also, but I'm going all the way up to Prudhoe Bay, and down to Anchorage, threw Fairbanks, and maby a ferry one way there, and drive the other way...THEN, I'm doing the 4 Corners Tour, with the Great American Motorcycle Adventure together, and plan on hitting all 49 states before I'm finished.
Starting at Fort Hood Tx, and Ending in San Diego, Ca. But probably have to go it alone. Should still be fun!
Mon Apr 18, 2011 at 5:35 AM
Great read - I've ridden from Alabama to Utah via South Dakota and Yellowstone, and need another long trip. You have inspired me. I've been chained to my desk for too many years.
And, most importantly, THANK YOU for your service to our country! We have the freedom to be able to ride because of you and all of those like you. An Air Force vet.
Mon Mar 28, 2011 at 6:35 PM
I was at a point where i was debating getting out of the service. ive loved every minute of it but am ready for a change. reading this article was a great influence. to be able to go out whenever without having to take leave. awesomely inspireing. thank you for serving.
*indiana born and raised
Wed May 19, 2010 at 9:47 AM
Really great travel log Trevor - truly inspiring. Thank you.
Tue Apr 13, 2010 at 10:45 AM
Thanks for all the comments guys, I'm glad you enjoyed the article. Check out the video at: www.trevstravelblog.com
I'm riding the Dragon in TN next week, and might be heading to Mexico this summer; best of luck to everyone taking on their own adventure.
Tue Mar 9, 2010 at 9:38 PM
Awsome, reminds me of Redline America
check it out if you haven't yet. Definately worth it.
Sat Feb 13, 2010 at 10:53 PM
Excellent, excellent, excellent!'
I'm riding from Key West Florida to Homer Alaska this June and I vicariously already made the trip thanks to your great article.
Thu Feb 11, 2010 at 7:21 PM
I had many such adventures thirty+ years ago. Well told on your part, live large. I'm thinkin perhaps I have one more left in me. Don't get chained to the wants of life, it will destroy your best. Ride, Ride, Ride!!
Thu Jan 21, 2010 at 9:29 AM
Im glad you got the opportunity to pull off an epic ride like that. I try to do that every couple of years. And now you have fired me up for my next ride! Very well written, I could relate with the different aspects of your ride as I am sure others can too. I often felt as if I were on the road with you guys. Im old Army and want to thank you, from one soldier to another, for your service. It seems vets really can appreciate the freedom of an epic ride for what it REALLY is, a chance to enjoy the freedom that we fought for and our buddies died for. Ride safe, ride long and always remember to ride for those who can't.God's speed brother.
Sat Jan 16, 2010 at 9:08 PM
Again, a great story. As I wait here in Georgia to get thru one of the coldest winters on record, I dream about getting on my new Yamaha vstar 1300 and doing something like this. I am glad you were able to do this after serving time in Iraq. Welcome home!
Tue Jan 12, 2010 at 9:42 AM
A buddy of mine and I are in the planning stages of an approx. 6-week trip from Charleston, SC to Denali park in AK and back, with lots of off-road routes through the wild wild West.
Great story - thanks for the insight on good stops through Canada, it gives us food for thought before we head out later this summer. Keep on with the Roads Less Traveled, they're definitely WORTH it!
*BTW, we are leaving my Honda VT800 and his HD Road King at home for this long ride - we're guessing about 10k+ miles roundtrip - and taking our new BMW dual sports bikes instead...F800GS & F1200GSA, respectively. Don't think our road cruisers would handle the trip as well as the Beemers. Also hope to post a good story & pics like yours when we make it back.
Thu Jan 7, 2010 at 6:50 AM
Just wanted to say what a great read. I've ridden further in one day but the riding conditions were about as perfect as could be. P.S. I hate being cold and wet!
Thu Dec 24, 2009 at 9:14 PM
Nice job, dudes.
Sat Nov 28, 2009 at 3:13 AM
Thanks for the ride friend. Felt like I was with you.
Sun Sep 27, 2009 at 4:53 PM
Sounds like the trip of a lifetime. It's been on my list of trips I want to take but will have to wait until retirement for the time needed but your story rekindled the fire.Great story and pictures, Thanx
Sun Sep 13, 2009 at 7:22 AM
Absolutely fantastic journey! Memories for your later years. Keep riding and ride safe!
Sat Sep 12, 2009 at 6:02 AM
Dude, thank you so much for the temporary escape from my desk. I am an Army vet and a native Montanian so I didnt have a very hard time relating.
Mon Jun 29, 2009 at 5:28 PM
Ride on Marine and great story! Semper Fi!
Mon May 25, 2009 at 8:01 AM
Looks like fun. Reminds me of what I have been cooking up in my twisted head for after I get out of the Navy in a year....
Sat May 23, 2009 at 4:07 PM
Outfrickin'standing!!! great journey, people, scenery, pictures, a brother to do it with and I'm sure lessons learned for the next ride!
Wed Apr 8, 2009 at 11:16 AM
Great story, Great trip. That makes me want to pack!!!
The pictures were awesome. Hope to read some more of your adventures.
Tue Mar 31, 2009 at 6:20 PM
I'm inspired - well done
Tue Mar 31, 2009 at 5:32 PM
I hope to get the chance to do a ride similar to this one day, after reading this it might be sooner than I planned! :) Loved the article.
Mon Mar 30, 2009 at 5:43 AM